I’m sure you’ve heard it all before—“don’t forget the reason for this season.” And we try not to. But sometimes it’s just easy to get caught up in the holiday rush, to lose the true meaning of Christmas in the midst of a crowded mall or your child’s lengthy Christmas lists.
These things—going shopping for presents, attending Christmas parties, decorating your Christmas tree, etc.—are not a sin within themselves. We just have to keep in mind that these tangible objects are not the reason that we celebrate Christmas each year.
The best Christmas gifts of all are not wrapped in wrapping paper.
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This Christmas, as you sing along to Christmas carols and open presents with your family, don’t forget to open the gifts that God has given you. These five gifts are intangible and are the promises and the true reason for this season:
1. Jesus saves and offers unconditional love.
“God loved the world so much that He gave His one and only Son so that whoever believes in Him may not be lost, but have eternal life.” John 3:16 NCV
Think about where you would be if it was not for Jesus dying for your sins. Without God sending His son, all of us would be lost, confused, broken, and we would have to pay the consequences of our sins. However, God loved us so much that He didn’t want us to go through any of that. He loved us so much that He sent His son to take our place and to pay our debt.
2. God brings hope to the hopeless and makes impossible situations possible.
“Jesus looked at them and said, ‘For people this is impossible, but for God all things are possible.’” Matthew 19:26 NCV
Let Christmas be your reminder that Jesus has come to bring hope in your hopeless situations. Let the birth of Jesus be a reminder that whatever seems impossible to man—for example, a virgin giving birth—is never impossible for God.
3. God uses the people whom the world sees as average or an underdog.
“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and he chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.” 1 Corinthians 1:27 NCV
There was nothing particularly special about Joseph or Mary, yet got chose them to be the father and mother to His only Son; there was nothing important about the stable that Jesus was born in, but God decided it would be the perfect place for His Son’s birth.
4. Jesus understands because He was once human also.
“For our high priest is able to understand our weaknesses. He was tempted in every way that we are, but he did not sin.” Hebrews 4:15 NCV
When Jesus was on earth, He didn’t live an extravagant, easy life. He was born into a manger. He wasn’t rolling in money. His physical appearance wasn’t even desirable (Is. 53:2). And he died a criminal’s death. If there is anyone who can sympathize with your struggles and temptations, it’s Jesus.
5. Jesus is Immanuel, which means “God With Us”
“The Lord himself will go before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forget you. Don’t be afraid and don’t worry.” Deuteronomy 31:8 NCV
Jesus didn’t leave us when He resurrected and was taken up to heaven. Any time you begin to feel lonely, anxious, or afraid, remember the meaning behind Jesus’ name: Immanuel. God is with you always.
These are the intangible gifts that keep on giving throughout the year, and there is no holiday song or Christmas party that can bring the peace and joy that they give. They provide way more than any earthly present can give. In fact, every tangible present underneath your Christmas tree is just tiny in comparison to the gift of Christ. The true reason for this season.